Although our natural tendency is to let things go on their own, believing that our partner should assume our needs and respect them, yet no one can read our minds, and everyone’s needs are unique. That’s why imposing healthy boundaries in relationships is considered by experts to be a cornerstone of “successful” relationships. There are several types of boundaries we should set in relationships: here are what they are and why they are so beneficial.
When these boundaries don’t exist, one or even both partners can feel misunderstood, neglected, disrespected, leading to feelings of loneliness in the relationship or even building a dysfunctional, toxic relationship.
It is not for nothing that all specialists claim that it is ideal to have good communication in a couple. And one of the important directions of this communication is about setting boundaries.
There are many types of boundaries in a relationship and it would be good to go through them all. This is the only way to shape the uniqueness of the couple and make the relationship stronger.
How to build emotional boundaries in a couple
Each partner comes into the relationship with emotional baggage from their past.
These psychological or emotional boundaries should be set primarily in relation to ourselves, as they relate to how we perceive what is happening in the relationship.
For example, we should not take over our partner’s moods, even if we empathise with his or her reasons, but we should keep our emotional balance in order to help him or her.
Nor should we let someone force us to change our inner values or let them make us feel bad or worthless. Any action or behaviour that induces such a state in us should be discussed, limited or changed.
Also within emotional boundaries it should be known that inti**te and personal information should not be disclosed and it is up to us how we express our intimacy, being able to refuse anything e.g. photos, videos etc.
How we build physical boundaries in the couple
These boundaries relate to your personal space, how you want your body to be touched, but also how you simply live as a couple. For example maybe certain touches are not good for you, maybe being given the least pleasant corner of the house, feeling uncomfortable and maybe second best, maybe being criticised for certain physical aspects of your image etc.
Pretty much everything about your body belongs to you and you shouldn’t let anyone bootstrap their way into your personal space. It is your right to refuse a touch or even an evening of love if you simply don’t want it. And this personal space should be respected by partners.
How to set material boundaries in a couple
When it comes to finances, couples are very different, depending on the culture they live in, their personal goals and more.
But financial limits are important because they give independence and freedom to the couple, but they also set an order so that things become functional and efficient.
It is also advisable, when realising these boundaries, to think about how finances and joint assets might be managed in the event of a break-up. Not that you’re putting evil before evil, but it’s a fact of life that people change and, after years and years, may decide to go their separate ways. Establishing these issues brings balance to the relationship and eliminates a lot of stressors, because they will also bring out the equality of the material investment in the couple.
How we build time limits in the couple
While more and more we come across information on how to improve our time together, it’s much less common to find advice on how to protect our personal time.
Each of us needs some time to ourselves, even if we love our partner and want them to be there.
For some people the freedom to go out with friends is important, others need space in the house to study for example without being disturbed, others need freedom for personal development, for business etc.
Everyone has their own unique needs and these should be discussed as a couple.
Perhaps one partner needs more time together or help with household chores. By communicating effectively, balance can be established.